Remote worker? Here’s why you might not get that promotion or bonus

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By Amanda Kavanagh

Remote working models are now commonplace but recent data reveals a concerning trend: remote workers are falling behind when it comes to career progression.

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Remote workers are promoted 31 per cent less frequently than people who work physically in the office, which encompassed both full-time in-office and hybrid workers, according to Live Data Technologies, which surveyed data from two million employees in 2023.

The employment data provider found that just 3.9 per cent of remote workers were promoted, compared to 5.6 per cent of in-office workers last year.

The absence of face-to-face interactions and reduced visibility impede remote workers’ chances of being considered for advancement opportunities.

New data, same story

This data backs up a plethora of research that previously reached the same conclusion. A 2019 paper called Get Noticed and Die Trying: Signals, Sacrifice, and the Production of Face Time in Distributed Work from the University of California Santa Barbara, observed that being seen at work resulted in positive outcomes for employees.

Meanwhile, a remote work study released by Alliance Virtual Offices last September, outlined that remote workers have worse performance reviews, and don’t advance as quickly as their office-working peers. 

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The same study also shared that remote workers are 38 per cent less likely to receive bonuses, work nearly double the overtime of their in-office peers, and that hybrid workers typically earn 23 per cent more.

CEOs are openly acknowledging proximity bias too. A recent report indicates that this is set to continue. In KMPG’s 2023 CEO Outlook report, 87 per cent of 1,200 leaders surveyed said financial rewards, favourable assignments, and promotion opportunities will be linked to office attendance in the future.

Performative attendance on the rise

Endless reports that reach the same conclusion have resulted in a trend called “coffee badging,” meaning employees go into the office to tag in, have a quick catch-up and a coffee, and then leave. Being seen is the primary objective. 

In an ideal world, companies would mitigate these effects by adopting proactive measures to level the playing field. However, most bosses want employees in the office, at least some of the time, as return to office (RTO) mandates continue to unfold.

The solution for those who wish to remain fully remote is to look for companies which are truly happy to enable and support this working model.

Remote inclusivity is evident through a company’s investment in remote infrastructure, flexible work policies, inclusive communication practices, and when training programs and mentorship initiatives are available to all. 

Companies that value remote employees acknowledge their achievements publicly, offer performance-based rewards, and ensure equitable treatment in compensation and benefits.

Most remote-inclusive companies will shout about it in their job specs, enabling them to hire talent from anywhere in the world, or at least within particular time zone parameters.

Ready to find a fully remote role? Head to the Euronews Job Board where you can browse hundreds of exciting jobs now. Here are three hiring this week.

Senior Product Designer, Decrypt, Remote

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Known for its independent publishing that demystifies the Web3 world, Decrypt is now seeking a Senior Product Designer to work remotely within +2 hours GMT and -5 hours GMT on its Rug Radio platforms. The successful candidate will collaborate closely with engineers, product managers and commercial teams to conceptualise and implement design solutions that meet the company’s high standards for aesthetics and usability. 

You’ll need a proven track record as a product designer with at least five years of experience designing digital products, a strong portfolio showcasing your expertise in UI/UX design, proficiency in Figma, Sketch and Adobe XD, as well as excellent visual design skills, problem-solving skills, and a user-centred design approach. Interested? Apply here.

Frontend Developer, Jobbio, Remote

Jobbio powers the job boards of the world’s leading publishers and is rapidly scaling its publishing network across the globe. Now seeking a Frontend Developer, this role requires a great JavaScript developer who is proficient with React.js to develop new user-facing features, translating designs and wireframes into high-quality code. 

You’ll work collaboratively in a fully remote engineering team, optimising components for maximum performance across a vast array of web-capable devices and browsers. You’ll need strong JavaScript skills, a thorough understanding of React, NextJs, Typescripts and its core principles, experience with data structure libraries, and familiarity with RESTful APIs. See the full list of requirements here.

Commercial Account Executive – Eastern Europe, Zendesk, Remote

In an outstanding period of growth, Zendesk is hiring a Commercial Account Executive for Eastern Europe to work remotely offering a best-in-class service. The successful candidate will keep a continuous focus on building a strong new business pipeline, capitalise on up-selling and cross-selling opportunities, and track details and forecasting in Salesforce, all while developing and maintaining customer relationships. 

You’ll need to become an authority on Zendesk products, have the motivation to be a top performer, have significant experience selling within the software industry and have a proven track record of hitting targets. Sounds like you? Apply today.

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